Commentary On Pelosi

1. If she’s messed up on church teaching, it’s likely others are too. If others are open to correction, then that’s not a bad next step.

2. Ensoulment discussions may be worth having, but they do not impact the church’s position on abortion.

3. Let’s also be clear that the moment of conception does not always produce a unique human being. For identical multiples, separation and differentiation occurs after conception.

4. Heartbeat at three weeks, brain waves at eight weeks, right?

5. Bottom line is that we go with the experts. Politicians don’t have the church teaching right, just politics. Scientists don’t have theology down, but evolution is a positive. Theologians don’t have evolution nailed, but they do on faith.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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7 Responses to Commentary On Pelosi

  1. Paul says:

    I think 3. is false (and to me, anyway, almost certainly false). That some kind of copying may occur later on implies nothing at all about the individuality of each conception.

  2. Todd says:

    What do you mean about the “individuality” of conception?

    We can say that each incidence of conception is unique. What we cannot say is that each incidence of conception produces an individual.

    Conjoined twins, for example, occur because the post-conception separation is incomplete.

    I think one can argue conception doesn’t produce individuals, and in spite of that fact, abortion is still immoral.

    But one can’t argue that abortion is wrong (in part) because conception produces a unique individual person. That would be false.

  3. Liam says:

    You could say conception produces at least one human being.

  4. Todd says:

    And I would say that.

  5. Gavin says:

    6. If you’re not certain it’s not human life, don’t kill it.

    7. I knew as soon as Biden was nominated that Catholics would get VERY VERY annoying until November. WDTPRS has become unreadable. I’ll just stay away from the conservative Catholic blogosphere altogether for now. Not a huge loss, of course.

  6. Paul says:

    I mean “individual” pretty much in the sense that Evangelium Vitae #60 uses.

    When you say: “Conjoined twins, for example, occur because the post-conception separation is incomplete”, this provides no evidence at all that an individual therefore did not exist prior to the twinning. That’s because the twinning takes place (essentially, though the actual science is very detailed) because of the copying of one individual to produce another. (The copying is not quite exact, since twins don’t end up with exactly identical DNA). Prior to the twinning there is one individual; after the twinning there are two.

  7. Todd says:

    There is copying to the extent that cell division copies the genetic code. There is little or no growth for the fertilized egg for several divisions. There is no differentiation until the egg reaches a few hundred cells.

    It would be a gross experiment, and it may have been done with animals or plants, but if individual cells were taken off before differentiation, I believe they would produce individuals.

    I see where you’re going with my #3. Let me amend it to say that conception produces an individual, but that splitting of the fertilized egg may also produce individuals.

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